You've Heard Of The Peace Corps, AmeriCorps; How About Climate Action Corps?
A first-in-the-nation program in California is focused on bringing climate change solutions to some of the state’s most vulnerable communities. The state has offered 200 fellowships for a two-month summer of service in urban and rural communities throughout the state, including here in San Diego.
The program is run by California Volunteers, the state office "tasked with engaging Californians in service, volunteering and civic action."
Chief service officer Josh Fryday heads the office and joined KPBS Midday Edition on Tuesday.
"We are going to call on every Californian to be part of the solution, and we're going to invest the resources to create an entire corp of people who are going to be given a stipend and a scholarship for college, and the opportunity to spend, whether it's a semester, or a year, or a summer, dedicated to taking climate action, dedicated to organizing communities," he said. "We're going to be calling on every Californian to volunteer and to take action in their homes and in their neighborhoods to be part of the solution."
KPBS Midday Edition also spoke with one of the fellows of the Climate Action Corps, Alex Richter. His assignment during the fellowship is with the nonprofit Casa Familiar Inc. in San Ysidro. He said he wanted to be part of the new program to take matters into his own hands.
"The California Climate Action Corp provides a great opportunity to actually put all these ideas, all these ideas I've been learning about climate change and actually do something about it," Richter said.
Fryday said fellows are serving within various programs across the state.
"We have fellows across the state doing a variety of programs necessary to help us reduce greenhouse gases. This includes food rescue programs to recover edible food that would otherwise be disposed of from producers, restaurants, grocery stores and households," he said. "We also have fellows that are working on fire mitigation work and protecting our communities from fires."
There are currently 17 fellows in San Diego, Fryday said.